WGA STRIKE UPDATE: ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live Will Also Return Jan. 2
Follows Monday Announcement by NBC’s The Tonight Show with Jay Leno , Late Night with Conan O’Brien
By Ben Grossman -- Broadcasting & Cable, 12/18/2007 9:34:00 AM
ABC’s late-night franchise, Jimmy Kimmel Live, will join NBC’s The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and Late Night with Conan O’Brien in returning to the air without writers Wednesday, Jan. 2.
“Though it makes me sick to do so without my writers, there are more than 100 people whose financial well-being depends on our show,” Kimmel said in a statement. “It is time to go back to work. I support my colleagues and friends in the [Writers Guild of America] completely and hope this ends both fairly and soon.”
While questions remained as to how Leno and O’Brien will handle their monologues, Kimmel’s format may be relatively easier to adapt to a writer-less environment. His opening segment is usually built around a series of humorous video clips, whereas his competitors’ monologues tend to just be built around jokes.
NBC announced Monday that its shows will return that same night, but without writers. Also in question will be what kind of guests the shows can attract, as actors may choose not cross the picket line to appear on the late-night shows.
David Letterman’s Worldwide Pants is trying to cut a side deal with the WGA to have its two CBS late-night shows -- The Late Show with David Letterman and Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson -- return to the air with writers. That would also enable them to book guests without the picket line being a factor.
Letterman has the luxury because his production company owns his and Ferguson’s shows, while NBC owns its shows and ABC owns Kimmel’s.
For full coverage of the strike, click here.
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